Episode 424: Don't Say Pumped

by James Jones, Jonathan Metts, Donald Theriault, and Guillaume Veillette - April 4, 2015, 8:25 pm PDT
Total comments: 27

Ahh, there's too much to talk about! How did we cram it all in? With some help from Donald and our listeners' emails, as it turns out.

Download in AAC Format

Subscribe to AAC Feed

Download in MP3 Format

Subscribe to MP3 Feed

Subscribe via iTunes (Please rate and review, too!)

So much happened in the last week that we knew it would be difficult to cover everything. On top of that, Jon was out on business travel, so we were playing with a man down. Donald to the rescue! Yes, returning guest and brand new NWR staff member Donald Theriault steps up to assist with this challenging and fun episode.

We kick it off with a sampling of Nintendo Direct news -- certainly not enough time to cover it all, but we offer some analysis on Nintendo's continuing DLC plans, the colorful revelation of Shin Megami Tensei X Fire Emblem, the surprise localization of Fatal Frame 5, expansion of Wii U's Virtual Console platform, and the ambitious new Fire Emblem game for 3DS. If we didn't get around to discussing something that interests you from that humongous Direct, just send an email requesting more on the next episode.

Even with all that news (and more to come in the last segment), we had to share some game impressions lest they be lost in the chaos of Nintendo's surprisingly active spring quarter. Donald shares a few thoughts on SMT: Devil Survivor 2 Record Breaker, weeks before the game's release for 3DS, and we also hear that Guillaume has turned around on the previous game in that series after not quite connecting with it by last week's episode. Another one Gui has come to appreciate is Cloudberry Kingdom, the procedurally-generated 2D platformer that works shockingly well as a multiplayer party game for Wii U (and other platforms). James horrifies everyone by actually playing and explaining Conception II, the tacky but maybe half-decent Atlus RPG (because we must eventually talk about every single one). Jonny tries to put out that fire and restore honor to the show with Valiant Hearts, a game about one of the least honorable conflicts in human history. Can a video game truly convey the horrors of World War I? Should it? And why the hell isn't this game on Wii U, when its companion (Child of Light) already is? No answers here, but there is plenty of praise for Ubisoft's melancholic (and informative!) adventure game.

Oh, were you worried we might skip over amiibo? Maybe we ought to, but nah, Listener Mail gives us the perfect opportunity to look at Nintendo's newest retail obsession and what, if anything, could pull us into that vortex. Zelda gets a spotlight too, of course, as we largely skip past the delay (for now) and focus on Eiji Aonuma's looming influence through a decade-and-a-half of running this beloved franchise. Finally, a fortuitously timed email gives Donald a chance to explain and promote his own podcast, Nintendo Free Radio. Check it out!

If you haven't yet heard the announcement, here it is: our next RetroActive game is... The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess! It's been over two years since we tackled this series for RetroActive, and y'all must want more, because the cross-generational Twilight Princess won (barely) over both Mario and Metroid in our biggest poll ever. Thanks so much to all who voted! It's going to be several weeks before we can play through this big game and discuss it on the show, but it's not too early to join the discussion in the official RetroActive forum thread. Remember, we'll quote some of the best comments on a future podcast.

This episode was edited by Guillaume Veillette. The "Men of Leisure" theme song was produced exclusively for Radio Free Nintendo by Perry Burkum. Hear more at Bluffs Custom Music.

Talkback

tofu_tofuApril 05, 2015

The digital version of the new fire emblem actually also requires DLC to get both. You get to choose which path in game instead of when you buy the SKU but after you choose, the game is locked to that path until you buy the other half. They also will have a deluxe retail SKU containing all 3 paths for 9200 yen.

It's only confusing because it makes no sense.

broodwarsApril 05, 2015

Quote from: Jonnyboy117

It's only confusing because it makes no sense.

It makes perfect sense when you consider that Nintendo has seemingly embraced every bad habit of the modern game industry since they started reporting in the red, especially in regards to DLC (usually via Amiibo).  If Nintendo releases FE like this in NA, I think they're going to be very disappointed in the sales.  Hopefully NoA and NoE manage to drum some amount of sense into this nonsense before the game's released in the West.

GonjinessApril 05, 2015

Just a heads up guys. The RSS feed has the podcast episode labelled incorrectly as last week's episode causing my podcathcer to not download the new episode. It thinks that it's last week's episode so it's not downloading it automatically. I had to manually download it.

It should now be fixed. Thanks for the heads-up.

Disco StuApril 06, 2015

I can't wait to go back and beat Twilight Princess for a 3rd time (first since time since 2008 though). It has its flaws but overall I think it's an excellent Zelda with fantastic dungeons, but I'll get more into that in the Retroactive thread  ;D

lolmonadeApril 06, 2015

Ugh...Twilight Princess...don't think i'll be paricipating in that one, I tried twice to get into that one, just couldn't. 

Has it been that long since NFR's debut episode?  3 years?  I had to double check, looks like you're coming up to that milestone pretty soon.  Congrats, guys, that's pretty awesome.  Does NFR have any special plans for their 3 year pod-iversary?

broodwarsApril 06, 2015

Quote from: lolmonade

Ugh...Twilight Princess...don't think i'll be paricipating in that one, I tried twice to get into that one, just couldn't. 

Has it been that long since NFR's debut episode?  3 years?  I had to double check, looks like you're coming up to that milestone pretty soon.  Congrats, guys, that's pretty awesome.  Does NFR have any special plans for their 3 year pod-iversary?

Not at the moment, but we're happy to take suggestions. For our recent 50th episode milestone, we watched & talked about The Wizard (which Donald had never seen). I have something planned for our 69th episode, but we haven't planned anything for the 3 year anniversary episode yet.

lolmonadeApril 06, 2015

Additionally, contrary to what James believes, I'd be shocked if Nintendo manufactures any of their own toy lines, including the Amiibo. 

I doubt that's a core competency to them.  They'd be better served to have a supplier manufacture them & send them to Nintendo so they could then distribute them internationally to retailers.  Suppliers who specialize in toy mfg would be better equiped to produce these toys at the price point Nintendo wants, as well as already have a pre-established quality & delivery record/infrastructure that they could leverage instead of building this business from the ground up.  I think it'd be better for Nintendo to utilize best-in-class mfg partners than try to reinvent the wheel by building in-house.

Regarding the argument Jonny made on increasing price on Amiibo - Supply & Demand don't have a pure 1-to-1 relationship.  Nintendo priced Amiibo based on what they believed the market could bear.  Because Marth, Villager, & now Jigglypuff ran out quick doesn't mean by itself that they should be priced higher, it just means those have a scarcity that the hardcore collectors were running to gather-up.  Many stores in my area have actually permanently reduced the price of the Mario/Peach/Luigi/Donkey Kong characters to $10.  You could argue that maybe the scarce amiibo should have an increased price ($15?), but then you run risk of frustrating your consumer base on variable pricing with no percieved added value other than the rarity.  If Nintendo is to run any Amiibo at an increased price, i'd expect it to be a special variant that's in very limited quantity.

ejamerApril 06, 2015

Quote from: lolmonade

... but then you run risk of frustrating your consumer base ...

I suspect, and this is just a guess, that Nintendo isn't that concerned about frustrating consumers when it comes to how Amiibo figures are priced or made available.  ;)

KDR_11kApril 06, 2015

Inazuma Eleven still comes in two versions per game.

lolmonadeApril 06, 2015

Quote from: ejamer

Quote from: lolmonade

... but then you run risk of frustrating your consumer base ...

I suspect, and this is just a guess, that Nintendo isn't that concerned about frustrating consumers when it comes to how Amiibo figures are priced or made available.  ;)


I bet they are, especially considering they're planning on releasing another wave of Marth amiibos.  I also guess they're more concerned about having too much supply more than not filling all the demand of these figurines.

ejamerApril 06, 2015

Quote from: lolmonade

Quote from: ejamer

Quote from: lolmonade

... but then you run risk of frustrating your consumer base ...

I suspect, and this is just a guess, that Nintendo isn't that concerned about frustrating consumers when it comes to how Amiibo figures are priced or made available.  ;)


I bet they are, especially considering they're planning on releasing another wave of Marth amiibos.  I also guess they're more concerned about having too much supply more than not filling all the demand of these figurines.

I still disagree. Nintendo won't care if consumers are frustrated until it has a tangible effect on their bottom line. At the moment, that's not happening because their target sales are low enough that "meeting demand" is much less important than selling through and meeting those low goals quickly.


Releasing another wave of Marth Amiibo figures isn't because they care about consumers - it's because that's cross promotion for the recent 3DS game and because they know the shipment will sell through (probably via preorders) anyway.

lolmonadeApril 06, 2015

Quote from: ejamer

Quote from: lolmonade

Quote from: ejamer

Quote from: lolmonade

... but then you run risk of frustrating your consumer base ...

I suspect, and this is just a guess, that Nintendo isn't that concerned about frustrating consumers when it comes to how Amiibo figures are priced or made available.  ;)


I bet they are, especially considering they're planning on releasing another wave of Marth amiibos.  I also guess they're more concerned about having too much supply more than not filling all the demand of these figurines.

I still disagree. Nintendo won't care if consumers are frustrated until it has a tangible effect on their bottom line. At the moment, that's not happening because their target sales are low enough that "meeting demand" is much less important than selling through and meeting those low goals quickly.


Releasing another wave of Marth Amiibo figures isn't because they care about consumers - it's because that's cross promotion for the recent 3DS game and because they know the shipment will sell through (probably via preorders) anyway.

I never said Nintendo's motivations are based on caring for their consumers.  I agree profit is the primary motivator, much like any other company.  You're the one injecting caring about customers into the discussion.  We just disagree as to whether or not Nintendo cares about frustrating their customers, not about whether they're motivated by customer service or profit.

pokepal148April 07, 2015

"You will find more amiibo angst then Jigglypuffs at Nintendo World Report"

I could bring this to so many levels, you realize that right?

Disco StuApril 07, 2015

Jonny, regarding BOXBOY!, I'm pretty sure none of the collectible crowns have time limits.  All the crowns in each level will be greyed if the number of boxes you've made is over a certain limit.  The bottom screen has a countdown showing how many more boxes you can make over the entire level before the crowns are uncollectible.  The crowns are removed with that number goes negative.


You might have made too many boxes at one point and mistook it for a time limit.  If I'm wrong about this I'm going to look like a jackas.

You're right. I saw the total box limit and thought it was a timer. In my defense, I'd played all of ten minutes of the game by the time we started recording. Have played it much more since then!

I would say it's undeniably clear that keeping tight stock on amiibo is, at least in Nintendo's judgement, smart business. If they didn't believe that to be the case, they would have already fixed the problem.


To them, over-producing and later having to mark down inventory cuts into the already tight margin on toy manufacturing. Additionally, keeping old amiibo in stock would require a more complex supply chain, with additional production lines and possible additional production facilities. This complicates not only the actual act of making the amiibo, but also in procuring materials and in the logistics of moving both raw and finished goods to and from the marketplace. Lastly, in the on-going war for shelf-space at retailers Nintendo would have ameliorated the concerns of retailers, still recently burned by the Great Plastic Instrument Depression, with assurances that unlike Disney and Skylanders they did not desire to take up a vast amount of retail space or slam them with 100 SKUs every 6-10 months.

ShyGuyApril 07, 2015

James Jones is the voice of cold, hard reason. Somebody send his post to Chris Kohler.

pokepal148April 07, 2015

Quote from: Crimm

with assurances that unlike Disney and Skylanders they did not desire to take up a vast amount of retail space or slam them with 100 SKUs every 6-10 months.

You say that but we've had 6 different versions of yoshi at this point.

In limited quantities.

lolmonadeApril 07, 2015

Quote from: Crimm

I would say it's undeniably clear that keeping tight stock on amiibo is, at least in Nintendo's judgement, smart business. If they didn't believe that to be the case, they would have already fixed the problem.


To them, over-producing and later having to mark down inventory cuts into the already tight margin on toy manufacturing. Additionally, keeping old amiibo in stock would require a more complex supply chain, with additional production lines and possible additional production facilities. This complicates not only the actual act of making the amiibo, but also in procuring materials and in the logistics of moving both raw and finished goods to and from the marketplace. Lastly, in the on-going war for shelf-space at retailers Nintendo would have ameliorated the concerns of retailers, still recently burned by the Great Plastic Instrument Depression, with assurances that unlike Disney and Skylanders they did not desire to take up a vast amount of retail space or slam them with 100 SKUs every 6-10 months.

Good observations.


Additionally, if you've been to a Wal-Mart recently, you'll see that most of them are still stuck with stock from the first Skylanders games, 4 iterations ago.  I'm sure that neither Nintendo or retailers want to be trapped in that scenario.

pokepal148April 07, 2015

Quote from: Crimm

In limited quantities.

Wasn't Yoshi one of the ones they were having a hard time getting rid of?

Link LinkApril 07, 2015

Quote from: pokepal148

"You will find more amiibo angst then Jigglypuffs at Nintendo World Report"

I could bring this to so many levels, you realize that right?

Nope. Please elaborate because I do not know what sort of levels you think you can bring it to nor do I think you can bring it to whatever sort of levels you think exist.

CapsulejayApril 10, 2015

So who was playing the role of Mr. Jon Lindemann in this episode's Now Playing?

The REAL Jon Lindemann, duh.

(Karlie)

pokepal148April 11, 2015

I love how Karlie always shows up in the most unexpected ways.

Got a news tip? Send it in!
Advertisement
Advertisement